Maruti Suzuki currently has as many as eight cars in its line-up that are all powered by CNG from the factory itself, including the Swift, the Dzire and the Celerio. Irrespective of petrol or CNG power, the car that you see here needs no introduction. It is after all one of the highest selling cars and perhaps the most popular CNG vehicle that I am sure either you or somebody you know are currently using. Now if you are looking for an affordable city car with low running expenses, the Wagon R with its factory fitted CNG option is a no brainer.
But which version do you really want? The entry-level LXI if you simply want an A to B vehicle that’s cheap to run. Or, for roughly Rs 50,000 more this VXI version which I think makes a lot more sense because of so many extra features that you will find useful every time you drive this car.
The CNG variants are part of the first major update that the current generation Wagon R got in early part of this year. The update included more efficient engines, 14-inch alloy wheels and dual-tone exterior colors for the top-spec ZXI+ variant which comes in petrol only. The VXI variant for the CNG model misses out on wing mirror-mounted turn indicators and the dual-tone paint option though it covers all the essentials.
The VXI variant is around Rs 50,000 more expensive than the LXI and for the extra cash you get a lot of additional features as standard. There’s 60:40 split for the rear seat, day/night inside rear view mirror, tilt adjustment for the steering wheel, a two-din music system with Bluetooth and two speakers. There’s also remote keyless entry, rear power windows, electrically adjustable wing mirrors and speed sensitive auto door lock function. Now there are some features like rear parking sensors, dual-tone interior, front airbags and ABS with EBD that are also available in the LXI variant of the Wagon R CNG.
Given the price sensitive approach of CNG models in general, the Wagon R CNG cannot be had in the top-end ZXI and ZXI Plus variants which come with fog lamps, electrically foldable wing mirrors, rear wiper, a four speaker touchscreen audio system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and alloy wheels amongst other features.
The 1-litre engine can be had in LXI and VXI variants whereas the pokier 1.2-litre is available only with ZXI and ZXI+. Both engines can be had with either a five-speed manual or a five-speed AMT but for the 1-litre engine it’s only the VXI variant that gets the AMT option. If you want the CNG option then you can have it with the 1-litre engine and a five-speed manual because that’s the only combination that you get. Now, Maruti has updated this engine to make it even more efficient than before and in fact, the brand is claiming fuel efficiency figures of around 34 kilometers for every kilo of CNG which is superb if you drive mostly within your city.
The engine makes 66 horsepower and 89Nm in petrol mode. Switch to CNG and it drops down to 55 horsepower and 82Nm of torque. So basically there are three modes to start up and drive the Wagon R CNG. First up is petrol mode where the car starts entirely using petrol. Then there’s Auto mode which is what Maruti recommends wherein the car starts on petrol and automatically switches over to CNG once on the move. Finally, there’s something called as forced CNG mode wherein you can start the car on CNG but then this mode is advisable only when there is no petrol in the car.
As for the CNG tank size, it’s equivalent to 60-litre water capacity so naturally the 340-litre boot area that the petrol-only Wagon R gets is reduced to less than 300-litres in here.
Now in terms of pricing, the LXI variant comes in at Rs 6.42 lakh whereas the VXI can be yours for Rs 6.86 lakh. And if you are looking at any other CNG model around the same price point then there is also the Celerio CNG to consider which is priced at Rs 6.68 lakh for the single VXI variant. But if you are keen on getting a CNG powered car that’s fully loaded from the factory then Tata Motors has you covered. In fact, their Tiago CNG can be had in the top-spec XZ Plus variant which is priced at Rs 7.82 lakh.
Keyword: 2022 Maruti Suzuki Wagon R CNG First Look>